Final days of open-water 2021: It’s big predator fish season

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The secret is out: It’s been a great autumn across north country for fishing, especially for crappies, panfish, and for me last weekend: smallmouth bass.

My partner and I had a fine day of autumn smallie fishing on the Mississippi River. As we see weather transition right now, the big fish you see it the picture was caught under windy, arguably cold front conditions.

Usually in fall, small crankbaits work well casting to riprap, but fish were not responding last weekend. After experimenting with several colors, profiles and retrieves, it became obvious that we needed a more subtle technique and presentation.

Faced with these conditions, I decided to employ a reliable late-summer tactic: wacky worms. Throwing a Powerbait MaxScent the General in green pumpkin into shallow rocks triggered the bite.

Long-angle casts into 2 feet of water  coupled with a crawl-and-stop retrieve to 6 feet of water became the productive pattern. We had to concentrate on very soft bites – basically a simple tick was the time for a solid hook-set.

We anglers must be less concerned about cold fronts; we just need to challenge fish with patience, persistence, and various lures. Fish of all species can be caught under any circumstance!

Categories: Blog Content, Fishing, Terry Tuma

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